Do things happen for a reason?

Last year was a crazy year in terms of flying. By the end of the year I ended up taking 86 flights. I definitely aged last year (as my son likes to remind me!!) When you fly that often you get into a pretty good routine to lessen the pain of air travel and also make use of time. I always tried to sit in the same seat near the front of the plane so I could get out quickly and get to my client on time. In front of me sat a lady who I found out worked for the airline I took the most flights with. We had travelled on the same plane for most of the year and yet had not spoken. Ridiculous when you think about it but either she got off before me or vica versa, anyway we never spoke.

One flight I took an extra bag on to the plane with me. This minor difference really changed my routine and made me realise how much we live our lives on autopilot. The lady was in her usual seat and I was in mine. As we got off the plane we ended up walking together and for the first time that year we spoke. We introduced ourselves and explained what we did. I mentioned that I had taken numerous flights with the airline and had some ideas that might help them generate more revenue without any additional costs. She was interested in hearing more and gave me her email address.

I got to my client and was rearranging my bags when I realised I had left my Ipad on the plane. Over 80 flights with no issues and the day I bring another bag and have to go out of my routine I leave something on the plane. So now I was in ‘get my Ipad back mode’. As I was working out what to do I suddenly remembered that I had the email address of someone at the airline who could help me. I sent her an email and within 5 minutes had one back saying that she had my Ipad in her possession. How lucky! How incredible!

So for nearly a year I had sat behind this lady and the day I leave my Ipad on the plane is the day I actually spoke to her, the day I got her email address was the day I needed help. Now I don’t believe things happen for a reason but I do believe there are so many opportunities in front of us that we don’t take notice off and leverage off. So two important things I learnt from leaving my Ipad on the plane, firstly recognise when you are living your life on autopilot and do what you can to keep your mind fresh and secondly opportunities are everywhere and you need to take your blinkers off to see them.

Originally published at on April 13, 2017.